North Central Baptist Hospital in San Antonio, Texas, recently honored Reagan High School coaching staff for their quick action that saved the life of a 17-year-old student when he collapsed after basketball practice. Kaeyel Moore’s heart had stopped.
Nearly 6,300 children younger than 18 years old experience out-of-hospital cardiac arrest annually, according to the American Heart Association. While these numbers may seem high–with education, training and quick action, the outcome can be miraculous.
Reagan High School athletic trainer Joseph Martinez jumped into action, immediately starting CPR while coach John Hirst retrieved a nearby automated external defibrillator. Together, the coaches saved the boy’s life due to their training and knowledge of these tools. Emergency medical services transported Kaeyel to North Central Baptist’s pediatric emergency room (ER), where he received additional cardiac care and made a full recovery.
In an emotional ceremony at the hospital, doctors, nurses and administration from North Central Baptist recognized Reagan’s coaching staff for their lifesaving efforts.
“Everything went perfectly,” said Bill Waechter, North Central Baptist Hospital CEO. “In this type of situation, the coaches became part of our care team, so that when Kaeyel arrived at North Central Baptist, our ER and cardiac teams were able to continue the critical lifesaving care already started. You have our heartfelt thanks.”
Through tears and with the support of his father at his side, Kaeyel thanked coaches for saving his life. “All I can say is, ‘thank you,’” said Kaeyel. “Thanks to my coaches and the people here at the hospital for everything they did for me.”
Trainer Joseph Martinez choked up during remarks as he talked about what happened that day on the basketball court. “Our training just kicked in and we did what we needed to do,” said Joseph. “I’m so happy that Kaeyel is still here with us.”